National Geographic : 1970 Mar
second island, upside down, and above that a third, right side up. The play of shimmering, shifting light reflecting from ice to cloud cover and back distorted shapes so that I could see anything I wanted-the prow of a shipwrecked yacht projecting from the floe, a downed plane, even Eskimos with sledges. Frustrated Giant Calls for Help After recalling the ice parties, the captain threw the ship against the ice again. But our wake had refrozen, and we had already dis covered the Manhattan's greatest flaw as an icebreaker-an inability to put her full 43,000 horsepower into reverse, because of the de sign of her turbine engines. Captain Steward asked Canadian Captain Pullen to radio the Johnny Mac for help. He did, saying, "Would you mind coming over to nibble about our quarters?" And the Johnny Mac came rollicking through the floe like a puppy in a pansy bed to break the ice around our stern. Capt. Paul Fournier, a peppery French Canadian from the Gaspe Peninsula grown gray in a career of fighting ice, hurled his guppy-shaped little vessel at the ice around us. It was a display of bold seamanship that pulled all the Manhat tan's officers to the wind-swept wings of the bridge to watch. The Macdonald's crimson prow slid up on the ice and then sank through it as the floes cracked under the ship's weight. When the doughty little vessel stuck, the captain backed her off and charged once more. Sometimes the icebreaker's bow passed less than a hundred feet from our stern plates, filling with horror those officer-observers who had never before seen a master ice mariner at work. By changing solid ice into a broken swath the width of his ship, Captain Fournier opened a relief valve. The grip on our stern loosened; we backed free and then rammed our way in to the floe and on toward M'Clure Strait, the KODACHROMES BY DON NEWLANDS.BLACKSTAR(BELO\ 385 TOMASSENNETT (FAR N. R.